SOCCER

Derby County manager Phillip Cocu says the decision to sack captain Richard Keogh was a club decision.

The Republic of Ireland international defender was released from his contract yesterday.

The 33-year-old suffered knee ligament damage as a car passenger when it was involved in a drink-driving incident after a club team bonding night.

And Dutch boss Cocu says the decision was one made by the higher powers in the Championship club:

The EFL is in talks with Liverpool about arranging a suitable time to play their League Cup quarter-final with Aston Villa.

Manager Jurgen Klopp has said they may pull out of the competition, if they can’t find a date that would stop it clashing with their Club World Cup commitments.

Former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher tells Sky Sports News, it’s a situation that could work in the club’s favour.

Tottenham have handed out indefinite bans to 48 fans who sold tickets to Red Star Belgrade supporters last week.

The Serbian side were banned from having their followers at the Champions League group game in London, as punishment for racist behaviour in the qualifying rounds.

But a large number of the away team’s fans were able to make it in.

Hearts have sacked manager Craig Levein.

He leaves with the club second from bottom in the Scottish Premiership, with just one win from 11 matches.

Levein also won’t be returning to his previous role as director of football, but will stay with Hearts until the end of the season to work on their backroom and youth structure.

Austin MacPhee has been put in temporary charge.

RUGBY

Rassie Erasmus is to step down as South Africa’s Head Coach after Saturday’s Rugby World Cup final.

He will continue on as the Springboks’ director of rugby beyond the tournament however.

The former Munster director of rugby is preparing his side to play England in the world decider in Japan.

England have named an unchanged starting fifteen for Saturday’s World Cup final against South Africa.

There is one injury-enforced change on the bench, where scrumhalf Ben Spencer comes in for Willi Heinz.

It’s the first time since March 2016 and only the second occasion ever that coach Eddie Jones hasn’t changed his starting lineup.

BOXING

Katie Taylor says she’s ready to become a two-weight world boxing champion this weekend.

The unified lightweight champion steps up to 140-pounds to take on Christina Linardatou for the W-B-O super-lightweight belt in Manchester on Saturday.

Taylor has won all 14 of her professional bouts to date but is wary of her Greek opponent’s power.



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